Master and Commander

Peter Weir's Master and Commander

That war is hell must always be a profounder fact than war is romance; nevertheless, war goes on being romance. Combine this with the further facts that the sea is romance, that the past is romance, and that the British imperial past holds peculiar romantic appeal for a large sector of the American middle class, and you can understand the opportunity Peter Weir seized when he undertook the adaptation of two volumes of Patrick O’Brian’s...

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About the Author

Richard Alleva has been reviewing movies for Commonweal since 1990.